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tv   Washington Journal  CSPAN  January 3, 2010 7:00am-10:00am EST

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>> investigation into christmas day continues. we know he traveled to a country with deadly insurgencies and joined an affiliate of al qaeda trained him and equipped him with explosives directing him to attack that plane headed for captioned by the national captioning institute [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2009] >> the president this weekend in hawaii. as mr. obama announced new details top attack or attempted a tack on christmas day.
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state department announcing the u.s. embassy in yemen has been closed. the president will host a conference wednesday and the air line and board of security is tightening and it's sunday, january third and we'll begin with developments and new information on yeah mmeyemen. (202) 628-0205 for independent. republican, (202) 737-0001, democrat, democrat, (202) 737-0002. al qaeda's yemen affiliate. some of the details co-written by associates of the president, the president called the end of
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the partisan attack quickly following the detroit incident. led by dick cheney that said last week the president does not consider the fight against terrorism an aware. here's more from the address yesterday talking about the situation in yemen and what's next on the fight on terrorism. when we get back. we'll take your phone calls. >> let us begin to protect the country we love. that's responsibility of all-americans. our adversaries are those that would attack our country. not our fellow americans or each other. let us never forget what carries us through times of trial. instead of giveing in fear and cynicism let's renew resolve and confidence and optimism. instead of succumbing to
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partisan let's summon the unity this moment demands with a seriousness of purpose. host: steve on the front news of the "new york times" says yemen's kay as aids the yemen cell. they've been fighting a war in the north and combatting them across the south and al qaeda has flourished in the territories of yemen creating training camps and receiving increasingly popular sympathy. they're quoted as saying, back to the opinion section m so some background on this country. they get 75 percent of it's government revenue from oil. unemployment rate is 35 percent. average per capita is less than $900 a year and population is 23
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million. more than 2/3 under the age of 24 and it's expected to top 40 million. republican line. good morning. caller: steve, i wish you would not interrupt me and let me speak for one minute. i believe yemen could be also pakistan is but i feel a more important point. i think you guys care a liberal and guess beautifully but i think you need to work on is having most of your newspaper are liberal. you have to agree. the "wall street journal". you read from occasionally and the washington times, i know but today there's no "wall street journal". host: and no washington times. caller: please don't interrupt me. host: patty, hold on. we read from other newspapers.
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caller: the other thing i want to say is, when your hosts are reading from the papers they transpose and insert their own words in lieu of others. for instance you were reading from a paper and inserting the work government and sometimes they actually screw up the whole meaning of the article. also, i wish you guys would have like national review, just to make it a little more fair of some conservative liberal print. the other thing, yesterday there were so many democrats calling on the republican line you could go through half an hour of call in psalms and never once listen to a republican. i don't know how you do that, but it's really getting ridiculous. it's incredible. host: did you want to respond
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to yemen and new front of terrorism. caller: i do think you could work on when they read from the newspaper they need to do it verbatim and you have to do something about democrats calling on the international and republican lines and you have to make sure they don't feel so free to do it. they start off saying i'm a republican and then they go and praise obama and criticize and want bush impeached and say they're embarrassed about republicans. i know you don't have to agree with ever are u thing republicans do and that's true but they're so blatant and you let them go and other thing you do is you don't identify which caller it is you leave off where it's republicans, democrats or internationals. >> thank you. we do want to focus on yemen,
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whether or not it's the new front on terrorism. we'll go to the international or independent line. host: david. caller: that's okay. it's new year. host: cold i understand. caller: global warming is cold up here. kidding i'm being sarcastic. about yemen. first of all with all due respect with the president you can't break bread with people that want to kill us. bring on the, bush, you can't get along with people that want to kill us. see my point? and also the fact that i mean this president has done nothing. like you just came out with the "washington post". i was just on-line reading same thing. this is linked before obama commented? host: actually the incident
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happened on friday and he made the first comments on monday. caller: i'm not being part son. but thank you very much and have a good day. host: david, thanks for the call. "newsweek" outweighing a new cover story. christopher dickings thousand points of hate. terrorist on the run. it's where they're running to is the problem. more about al qaeda. it tried to take up the next step over the skies of michigan and there's a quote saying in the piece available on-line at "newsweek".com. when you have an affiliate projecting in the u.s. environment that's a big deal. it had very clear, loud local agenda but also decided to move globally. let's show our audience. again a thousand points of hate
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and story begins saying battle against terrorism is fought in the shadows and far away. they don't always remain there. when the bad guys try to attack closer to home the public is shocked and angered. one time there might be a vague report from yemen. american forces or at least american weapons have seemed to be involved and then the christmas day incident in detroit. bill from cape cod. good morning on the republican line. caller: yemen is not a new deal. it's something the press is finally talking about. this guy that was trying land in detroit and blow himself up came from. yemen has been well-known to the people responsible for keeping us safe for a very long-time. it's just the press decided to start talking about it.
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but i find totally interesting that we're in the ninth day, i believe after that detroit situation and i have yet to see on the local t.v. massachusetts or national t.v. any representative of islam stepping forward to say this is terrible. as per usual. some t.v. stations. some person assigning at the news desk will eventually send some reporter out to some islamic institution to get a quote and they'll come out and say how terrible it is. after they're finished they'll crawl back into their mosque and fly away until the next time they are asked. why do they need to be asked to come out against terrorism. host: bill, thanks for the call. more on-air important security and are americans ready for the new travel hurdle.
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story from ellen krieger saying that from the humble dog to the naked body imaging. airports can detect bad guys with explosive but it's not enough. scott steward the vice president of tactical intelligence says we have an arms raise. they evolve tactic the ropes as we evolve security. from duh! the chess new york. the new front on terrorism, yemen? caller: you know, it's just another front. i wit was going to respond to someone saying not breaking bread with some of the countries. it doesn't rule out you know breaking someone's head later down the road if you have to and i'm a democrat. i know republicans never think that a democrat is willing to fight for this country.
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but you know you did mention in the article that you read about the percentage of income that yemen gets from oil. host: right. about 75 percent comes from oil and that income is down substantially according to the "washington post". caller: again, it's been talked about. getting off our addiction to oil and middle east oil as a way to fight terrorism. i would love to see a furthering of the policy - the energy policy moving this country towards energy independents and smaller cars. if you drive a car with 40-50 miles to the gallon even if gas prices go up you drive a car with that kind of fuel economy you're going to consume less and again of course i'd love to see us moving towardfully electric
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automobiles. host: thanks for the call. our twitter a dress is kyle wilson saying terrorists are living right in our neighborhoods here in the country. government seems uninteresting. art on the independent line. good morning. caller: yes. yemen is just like the other caller just another front for tear the ror. it didn't happen overnight. it's just easier for them to operate there. the guy knew where to board the plane to make it into the u.s.. my problem is that, where did this fail? why wasn't this taken seriously when that guys father went to the u.s. embassy to try to alert us. heads need to roll not just at the top but all the way down to the people that got this message
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could do something about it. if we did that and revoked this guy's passport this probably would have never happened. host: peter baker with the president in honolulu said in the "new york times". first of all general a try us said the u.s. would double the security sent to yemen to help fight al qaeda. great brittain announcing it and u.s. would jointly finance a counter terrorism police unit in yemen. news services and reported. further into the body of the story is to your point that mr. obama indicated he and government largely accepted the accounts offered by the alleged terrorists and on a statement on the web the national security
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agency had intercepted communication as among al qaeda leading months ago talking about an unnamed nigerian prepare together attack but the government never correlated. republican line. good morning your on the air. caller: wanted to comment on the first caller talking about the caller. all the people that moderate the calls do an excellent job. someone said to call and talk about the topic. i'm glad you can distinguish when someone is going off on a tangent. i think that the yemen is afroing concerned. i don't think it should be considered the primary area. in order to moderate dangers we should see like saw day rab you,
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and britain, that will help us. thank you very much. happy new year. host: thanks for the call. democrats line. los angeles. massachusetts john, welcome to the journal. caller: hi. good morning. this has been doing on since bush became president. i had this question that - hi. you know this has been going on for as long as i can remember. you know when bush came into office his holding saw day rab you's hands and they're walking around and you see how all this has gone on for years in the middle east. we sit here and make contracts and deals with people over energy and everything else and half the time it's all about money and we don't even know who we're get the waining in bed with. i always notice during the bush administration when all the planes were grounded how did the bin laden family get to lee when
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they were doing business here. everybody in the united states had to be ground and because of money and power and they always say van dare was like family to bush. we're dealing with these leaders that making deals back home deals with people and then all of the sudden they come back you know and roost here and then you wonder why we're being attacked. we're spending our own money to give this money to these people for energy to come back and kill us with our own money. when we going to wake up? you know? it's like we're being directed in one way and then when we make deals with these people they're suppose to be the good guy and look what happens. host: thanks for the call. "washington post" says al qaeda benefits for decades worth of miss stepped in yemen. first of all u.s. commandos are
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trained encounter tactics. many say the war could arrive too late to change the trajectory in yemen. since the u.s.s coal attacked the nation has been past toward the illusion that the government is weak to control swats in the country. it's stretched thin and separatist movement in the south. it's got high employment unemployment rate and al qaeda has flourished. yemen, the new front on terrorism. independent line. robert? go ahead. caller: um... am ion air or you have kind of like a buffer? host: pete in gladstone, michigan. good morning. caller: yeah. i don't think we can call it a
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new front. this has been doing on since the u.s.s coal. i'm just perplexed that our new president you know doesn't want to call it a war on terror. it should be aware on islamics and extremist. i see yesterday the guy that drew the mohammed bomb was attacked in his barn in copenhagen with an axe and a knife. it's - you know i mean if you can't even draw a cartoon about mo' ham ed who's not god, it's ridiculous. have you ever showed the cartoon on c-span? you can't let these people control us. i think you should show it. host: we did years ago. it's been three or four years though. caller: i don't know. salmon rush ty probably still has a hide out.
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these people - the so-called muslims that aren't extremists. can't speak out against them because that's against the koran. they'll kill you. see what it says. i don't see a lot of people speaking out against the religion because they can't do it. it's scary. host: thanks for the call. front page story. obama ties al qaeda to the plane scare. the president back at the white house tomorrow. ben from north carolina. good morning. is yemen the new front on terrorism? caller: i think since the place is no bigger than it is, the town of whatever it is, i think we should blow them off the map because that's where all these people are coming from but our president won't do anything to
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make islamic people mad. or any country that has one drop of oil. let us drill our own oil. he'd rather fool with the terrorists than to have to depend on ourselves. host: look at the map of the region. yemen borders saudi arabia. associated press reporting they're closing on sunday in respond to the on-going al qaeda attacks or threats. and gaining new urgency after the failed a tempt to bomb a u.s. airliner headed to detroit and the president said in yemen was behind the attempt. the statement on the embassy website said it closed but provided no further detail the ropes and embassy spokeswoman would not comment if there was a specific threat on there. they urged them to be vigilant
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and practice what the state is calling security awareness. unclear how long the embassy in yemen will be closed. kansas city, missouri, independent line. good morning. caller: good morning. happy new year to all of you. i want to speak against myself. i was born in egypt. come to the united states when jimmy carter took over to be president and here, i see a good democracy in the united states. every president in the middle east there is for lies. the problem is not to rid al qaeda. everybody looks up to the united states and wishing united states can change that system to make a free democracy so every country. yemen, tomorrow. so mall you.
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if you remember, all these leaders is dictators and they have a benefit from having organization like this going to keep democracy against them. we need democracy and liberty from the middle east from the leaders not from the people. you watch and see what will be. unfortunately, people in america don't realize it's the true picture in the middle east. not just saudi arabia but all middle east. host: where are you from originally? caller: i was born in egypt but i fought against russia in afghanistan and i don't realize all this is political to me. the problem truly believe me is the leader in those country. presidents are not for democracy. host ho thanks with the call. this weekend "new york times," a
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list of reuben writing in a clear signal the president karzai can't count on parliaments report. most of his nominees expressed discontent with the candidates competence. the "new york times" says 17 were rejected and 17 approved. all but one are currently cabinet ministers the president's office had no comment on friday. they said the news conference would be held today. the effect where is difficult to predict it's he'll try to make recess appointments once the parliament leads for the winter break but there's a deep divide between the president and parliament and could leave a number of ministry as drift under deputy ministers that lack political power. this morning from the "new york times". ellen from sunnyville new york.
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is yemen the new front on terrorism? caller: absolutely. this president and e reck holder don't get it. they're going into more, al qaeda is going into regions where they understand this president won't do anything to the countries that don't have the capabilities we have and nobody is talking about the fact that this animal, actually was going to kill innocent women and children on an airplane came out of yemen with 30 others that tried to attack us in november and another one in december. same profile and yet this animal was - all refusing to talk and what's the doj and president doing? they're talking about giving this guy skin graphs and protecting him and we can't interrogating him because under this department of justice and
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this the punk of a president, we're not even naming what, we can't even find out about the other 30 or 300 trained the same way he was in yemen and we can't integrate this guy and find out exactly - if we didn't integrate maybe water board him a little huh? and find out what he knees about the 30 to 300 just like him. host: you don't think they're questioning him. based on the president's comments they have. caller: he's all lawyered up. host: thanks for the call. yemen is not the new front on terror in this article. says terry deafich. we have no embassy and no intelligence apparatus. president wrapping up the ten day vacation in hawaii. president and his family getting snow obama.
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shaved ice at one of the locations out of honolulu. lynn from west virginia. good morning. caller: good morning. how are you? host: democrats on-line. caller: i followed the philosophy of john casey. i think we're making huge mistakes in under estimating these people from the midwest that their uncivilized barbarians i think they're way ahead in technology for terrorism and it's a matter of time before they start implanting these explosive devices in themselves avoid detection and then blow a plane up. host: one view from the "washington post". yemen a state that must be saved. they're problems are many and some are spreading beyond borders. security and stability are deteriorating. population is growing rapidly.
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the economy is collapsing and there's few good options and things will look worse tomorrow and sustain international attention is needed to lessen the impact. yemen is a weak state with little history of central government control. civil war in the north and growing succession movement in the couth. al qaeda is now reinsurgent. the government doesn't fully control all the territory nor does it have the authority and capacity to add quality deliver social services in many rural areas. organizations like al qaeda seek refuge in these such places. independent line? caller: how are you? yeah, um... i do understand mr. obama does what he can but the idea dub thing amount that the
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u.s. and gives to yemen on aid is actually just - this is a place where we've known that terrorists have been training. giving them a means and encouraging them. okay. we have to punish yemen. we reduce the money we give to them and we also have to terrorize them just like in afghanistan. and in pakistan. that's only way this can be done. host: thanks for the call. from the "new york times" best seller list. going rogue by former governor sarah palin. it's been number one five weeks in a row. have a little faith is two. arguing with idiots and stones in school and open by andre aggasi is five. also on the list. super freak economics and out
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liars. robby from los angeles. is yemen the new front on terrorism? caller: yes, it is. i have a common sense approach. just so you know, i was born in nigeria and raised by an american mix their that happened to be a teacher after my biological mother died and also my father, my biological father was an african diplomat. i really have faith in private citizens because of my experience with my missionary mother from the united states. i think education and primary economics are primary focus. good gracious when we have 50% illiteracy - is that what i read? when c-span scrolled in yemen and economics.
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$900 a year? host: yeah. caller: we can barely live on that in the united states in a week. but in a year? so when you have these developments, of course al qaeda is going to have a possible in filtration. i really again, i focus on faith in private citizens. i was raised to believe in the individual and education and capitalism and i heard president barack obama say we're not better than other countries but the fact is america is the greatest country in the world. why? because we do believe this the individual and in education and do believe in pushing ourselves beyond our limits to making money, but then we also do good things with money. look at oprah. she's helping with education and
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that and economics and private citizens. let's do something. don't just count on government. put our money in - i mean i was heard about the fort hood alleged shooter, he was making like 90,000 dollars a year and sending $60,000 to quote/unquote muslim charities. how about we put a little of our funds into helping people and building schools and into really causing people to be able to be empowered and as people are able to read for themselves, they will be able to see some of these things that really are against humanity and terrorism is. that's all i have to say. host: okay. thanks for the call. some of the conversation on our twitter page. one viewer, punish yemen. yes they'll have to sell their
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oil and stuff to india but we have to drive our gas guzzlers. "new york times" and others focusing on - the other front page story above the fold and "washington post" focus on detroit. motor city. residents there feeling beaten up by the fight to find work. unemployment rate in detroit. 16.5 percent according to the "washington post". we'll talk more about iran in a couple of minutes and in the final half hour. situation in cuba. relations with cuba and fidel castro and with the president barack obama administration putting forth with cuba and roundtable looking at the 2010 midterm elections. with rothenberg and charlie cook.
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>> steve one of the issues is what's a head in congress for this year. terrorism and intelligence issues as discussions continue on the failed attack on the jet liner on christmas day. the guests on nbc's meet the press hosted by david gregory will be former cia director and former homeland security michael chert o f. on abc this week. terry moren and ranking republican peter hookstra and homeland security intelligence chair. joseph lieberman and ranking republican susan collins. this is hosted by chris wallace. john brennen and missouri republican, vice chair of the senate intelligence committee on face the nation from cbs. host bob shaver with nancy court
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u.s.. david martin. and c mark ndsango state of the union will guest host we'll have a guest host who has not been announced but the guests include deputy national security announce eer, former 9/11 commission chair and south carolina republican. you can listen to all five of the sunday morning talk shows starting at noon eastern on c-span radio. 90 point 1 fm here in washington,dc and on the web at c-span radio dot org and follow us on facebook and twitter. >> after a while you think it's gone and you don't own it anymore and your trespassing and that hurts. my possessions are now in a storage bin. what i was able to get out before the house was locked up. >> this week on q & a.
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american casino. they're award-winning documentary on the impact of subprime mortgages on minorities tonight at 8. mitchell mullkin our guest today on book t.v.'s in depth. four books including culture of corruption takes three hours with michelle mallkin live today on book t.v. >> "washington journal" continues. host: our guest is ever ever. professor at penn state. thanks for joining us. how serious of a threat do we face from i ran's nuclear capabilities? guest: i don't view it's a serious threat. it needs to be dealt with. what we know about the iran look
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- nuclear. they're trying enrich uranium. as far as we know. iran has enriched uranium to 3-4 percent the level required for civil reactor fuel but is nowhere near the level to have weapons grade this material. iran is not forbidden to do that by the nonproliferation treaty and they believe it is their right to be able to develop these fuel cycle capabilities. this is not an eminent threat. there's no sign that i ran has nuclear weapons today and my own view is that, what iran might like to achieve at some point is something that you might describe as a nuclear option where they would have mastered
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many of the cape biments would would need to assemble nuclear weapons but i see no evidence they've actually taken a decision to go all the way to weaponization. so i think this is a nuclear program like any other, has proliferation risks associated with it and those risks need to be ma'amed through diplomatic manners but i don't view it's a serious threat. host: first of all the president said when he took office he wanted to give a year to continue iran's nuclear diplomacy. you also have iran saying, we're going to continue this nuclear program. it's for energy not for nuclear weapons and you can accept our proposal or reject it but that's basically what's on the table. host: right now the positions of the two sides are not easily
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reconcilable. but in particular iran has proposed, they have a civilian search reactor used to produce medical isotopes. that reactor is thoroughly safeguarded and never been implicated in any activities that generate concern about weapons proliferation and that reactor is running out of fuel. many months ago iran proposed that it basically buy new fuel from international providers to help it do that. the united states and a few other countries came back with a proposal. maybe we can get you some fuel but you'll have to ship most of your current stockpile out of iran in order to do that. the two sides have been going back and forth under the conditions under which some sort of swap might take place. the united states has a set of
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conditions that are unacceptable to iran. and so there's no deal been made on swapping uranium for finished fuel for the new reactor. iran said, look it's a simple commercial technical transaction. we need fuel for this and we want to buy it if you don't we're going to have to figure out how to enrich the uranium to the higher levels required for this particular sort of reactor. i don't think, as a matter of nonproliferation we should want to give iran incentives to do that. host: about that then, by our way to our audience including those onx m. our guest is flynt leverett and he'll be with us to the top of the hour. the "new york times" front page the headline is u.s. see as window to pressure iran on nuclear fuel. unrest on those critical of the
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government in tehran and elsewhere. administration seeing what they call leaders particularly vulnerable to strong and immediate new sanction as according to the "new york times" would initiate a phase to force iran to combine with demands to halt the production of nuclear fuels. is there a window of opportunity? guest: no. i think they have an accurate sense of thinking on how to proceed at this point to the president barack obama administration but i think that reflects wish full thinking about iran and where it is and degree of western leverage over uranium decision making. i don't believe iran is vulnerable to the kinds of sanctions that might be endorsed by the un security council. i don't think it's vulnerable to
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unilateral sanctioned by the united states and i don't believe some of the demonstrations and protests we saw in iran last weekend, and in any way, create some unique vulnerability for opportunity for the united states to leverage that decision on a nuclear issue through sanctions. i think that is detached from reality. host: some of the scenes from tehran, what, if any repercussions do they face in iran? guest: there's reports that perhaps as many as a thousand people have been detained connection with the protests that took place on december 27th. but you know, i think that the coverage of those protests was really grossly over blown in the west. i mean, you had many commentators and reporters talking about how this is the begin of the end of the islam
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republican and how they will disappear during 2010. i think that is really fanable. you have perhaps it is largest demonstration in tehran since a funeral in 1989. basically a million person demonstration in tehran to show support for the islamic republican. i don't believe that the islamic republican will collapse or implode and you know, if the obama administration or other western fonts are basing their policy on that kind of assessment i don't think it'll work well. host: maryland. good morning to you. independent line. caller: i been looking at the demonstrations in iran and they look similar to those in france last year. look like demonstrations we've
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had in this country. young people are demonstrating and burning cars but i don't understand this constant drum beat. this language against iran from this country and i think it's instigated by the support of israel. there's a program on public television. he do a program, with steve, did 45 hours of filming. beautiful program. he aided private citizens home and interviewed all kinds of people. american people should get this program and look at it. guest: i think the caller makes a couple of important points. one is, the islam republican is a more normal country than a lot of americans - i think are inclined to believe - i think that the basic political order of the islaming republican still
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commands the support of the vast majority of the iranian population. but i think she makes another important point too. there's an incredible amount of dehumanization in iran that goes on in the united states. i think that's unfortunate. it is perfectly legitimate to have policy differences with iran. you know, there are real differences in interests and policies and perspectives on regional issues between the united states and iran. but this is a very, very important and substantial country and a critical part of the world. and at this point, the united states cannot achieve it's subjective in the middle east without a better more productive relationship with the islamic production than we have. i like to draw the analogy between iran today and the
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people's republican of china in the early 1970's and thank god president nixon realized the united states needed a productive, constructive strategic relation ship with china and i think the world has been the beneficiary of that since. we need to understand that we need a constructive, strategic relationship with the islamic republican of iran and get to work on building that relationship. host: ever ever is a graduate of texas christian university. also at mit and professor at penn state university we do have twitter comments saying sorry flynt they're building a bomb to drop on new york city. we're going to preempt them by force. question to you, then what? guest: i hope the forecast is
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wrong. i hope we're not so full hardy to try to eliminate their program by force. first of all i don't think that's feasible. i think the program is to dispersed. we would not be able to eliminate it through military action. but secondly, i think that the consequences of such an action would be very, very bad for american interests. i mean first of all as i said earlier. my own view is that iran has not taken a decision to go all the way to building nuclear weapons but if you wanted to increase the chances that iranian leadership would take such a decision, i think striking iran's nuclear program militarily is a very, very good way to encourage that kind of decision on the part of the iranians. secondly, i think iranians have
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many ways of pushing back against american interests in iraq and afghanistan. places where we have troops deployed. other ways in the region that they have of pushing back against our interests in ways that could really do damage to the american strategic position in the region. so, i hope that the forecast is wrong that we would not be so foolhardy to try and deal with what we think are the proliferation risks involved with iran's nuclear activities by resort together military force. host: weekly standard says in 209 we engage and in 2010 we need to e limb nalt the current regime in that country. is that likely? guest: no. i don't think the islamic republican is doing anywhere in
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2010. i think that it is - it is unfortunate. president barack obama who is pursued what i consider half hearted. not to say half baked efforts at diplomatic outreach is given the region a bad name. the obama administration has not pursued engagement aimed a the kind of realignment of relationships between the united states and islamic republic as what president nixon did. obama has made some nice statements and he's offered some interesting or favorable rhetoric, rhetorical formulations in addressing iranian leaders but put no proposals on the table that would address key iranian
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strategic needs and he's not laid forward a road map for realigning relationships for the two countries. until we do that we in the united states have not been serious about engaging iran. it's unfortunate the half hearted a tempts the obama administration made in this last year are taken as litmus test that engagement with iran won't work. i think strategic engagement with iran is absolutely needed and for us to adopt regime change for the islamic republic. what i think was a very bad decision. host: good morning republican line. caller: like to say what a refreshing change it is to see this gentlemen on instead of the normal talking head liberals on this point.
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the proisrael crowd with the blaterring for war. iran posts no threat to this country and i don't see why all this demonization is going on like it is. it's so typical of the run up to the war in iraq and come to find out, they had nothing they claimed that they had. all this stuff will change only once our foreign policy is not run from tel aviv. guest: caller made a number of interesting points. one i'd like to respond so to is the parallel on the way at which rhetoric public statements from u.s. government officials -- the way in which those are pending now with regard to iran and parallel with the run up to the iraq war in 2003. i find those parallels um...
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both increasingly obvious but also quite disturbing. in the run up to the war, on iraq. people in institutions both institutions of government, institutions of the media intelligents and so forth that should have asked really hard questions about why we were doing this and what was the threat and problems and evidence to indicate that these were the problems, hard questions needed to be asked that for the most part were not asked. and in many cases now i see a kind of similar rush to adjustment going on with regard to iran and unwillingness to take the time to ask the hard questions and what really is going on here? what really are american interests here? how is it best to pursue those interests? and you know, i think that it would be a real tragedy if,
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basically we had not learned enough from our sad experience dealing with iraq, if we had not learned enough this time around to ask some of the hard questions. host: part of the on-line conversation. one says i know let's bomb the crap out of everyone. we talk about war like we're talking about going to a picnic. guest: well, i think there's certainly some people that are very fast holding in advocating use of force to deal with iran or add slow kating regime change as ultimate goal of american policy toward the islamic government but i think those approaches are not just that they won't work, but they would be really damageing for american interests in the region. would not help us accomplish what we say as our goal in this
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part of the world. host: and some one saying iran cuts down the straight. 30 percent of the oil, gone. guest: if iran were to shut down the straights. i ran would not be able to export it's own oil. and exsporting oil is a very critical component of iran's economy. so - i don't really see that as a very feasible or likely scenario. host: kevin democrat line with ever ever professor at penn state university. our focus is iran and relations and what's next for the president barack obama administration. caller: good morning. to doctor ever ever, t flynt leh
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more people thought like you do. one of the questions you asked was, is iran an eminent threat to the u.s.. i couldn't agree more with the fact that, no it's not. one of the previous callered said it's not at all which i think is nieve. any country could be a threat to the u.s.. i agree with flynt leverett on the fact that we need to have diplomatic relations with iran. there's no sense in talking of the fear monger of bombing iran that they have nuclear weapons already or hiding or lying just like iraq in 2003. supposedly had all of these hidden weapons of mass destruction and so forth. i think the eminent obvious threat we have right now is something you had discussed earlier on your show which was
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the new front on terrorism. you said yemen is at the new front on terrorism. well it's not necessarily the new front. it might be a different front on terrorism. with the fact that they are al qaeda is able to go into the mountains of yemen and with the country being as poor as it is with what you read from the times and post, that there's no government control over many parts of the country and they're free to do what they want. we're in afghanistan, and unfortunately we're in iraq. that to me is more of an eminent threat. someone like these countries that the terrorists, al qaeda whomever can just go and hide and you know, and train and try and do what it is that they have
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in their mind. host: kevin i'll stop you there. thanks for the call. response from flynt leverett. guest: i think i would agree that we really have not handled the effort to contain, roll back, stop sunnis extremist terrorists threats to the united states, but i think this links to a point i made earlier. at this point, the united states can't achieve any of it's high priorities the middle east without a more productive relationship with iran. and i think you know the fight against extremist terrorism in this part of the world is a very, very good example where al qaeda groups like al qaeda you know, they may dislike westerners or dislike jews and
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israelis but the number one enemy for al qaeda and groups like it are shiite muslims. iran has been a victim of this kind of terrorist violence. in the immediate aftermath of the immediate attacks i can tell you that iran offered us quite substantial cooperation when we went into afghanistan, cooperation in getting rid of the taliban and trying to round up al qaedas seeking to flee afghanistan. cooperation in standing up postal ban government in afghanistan. bush administration ultimately walked way from that cooperation but iran was prepareed the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks to cooperate and help the united states in fighting al qaeda and i think that's just one example
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of an issue where the united states will not be able to achieve it's goals unless we develop a more constructive relationship with iran. host: our guest is flynt leverett. you can log on-line for more information at new america dot  net. a link available to c-span dot o'n org. texas call. caller: good morning. i got four sons. and three different universities and one in junior college. if i had a professional i would pull them out. they walk around like a sack over their head like nothing going to happen to this country. that's like having a bandit outside your house and opening the door. i don't know why everyone is so against israel. the only way is to get
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independent on oil in our own country that will hurt those countries. that's all i got to say. guest: um... you know, i don't consider myself antiisraeli. i don't think i've said anything this morning that can be construed as antiisraeli in any way. i understand certainly you're not the first person to suggest that the united states could be energy independent that we could basically extra kate from dealing with the problems in the middle east but i think frankly energy independence is an illusion or myth. we can't do it. so, i think, you know we're going to be involved in the middle east because of oil, because of israel because of a lot of other interests that we have. we're going to be involved in the middle east for a long time
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to come. host: david from south carolina. republican line you get the last question. good morning. if you could turn the volume down on the set. please go ahead david. caller: how's it going? good morning.. well i had a comment about iran. maybe we could like stop funding them for yemen also, all the muslim countries and their oil and dig on our coastline and maybe that can slow down the terrorism and stop funding the countries trying produce it and maybe we can like slow the war down and slow down these people with that. thank you, sir. host: thank you, david. guest: frankly i don't think there's enough oil in the united
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states even including the outer continental shelf. i don't think there's enough oil to make-up all of the oil that the united states has to import. every day. even if the united states by itself could achieve some version of energy independence, we have very, very vital allies in asia, europe who will remain dependent on imported hydrocarbon. i think as, you know a major economy in the global economic quarter, the united states has an on-going interest for as far as eye can see in a free flow of crude oil, hydrocarbon from the persian gulf to international energy markets and i don't think that will change any time soon.
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host: tom with this twitter comment saying what does iran want from us? guest: i think what they want from us is first of all, acceptance of the islam republican as legi mate political order in iran. i think that they want a recognition or acknowledgment that iran is an important country in it's region and has both legitimate interests and a legitimate regional role to play. um... i think that within a framework of that kind of acceptance and acknowledgment of iran's regional role, i think iran would like to senior mallization between ra relations in the united states. lifting of sanctions.
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normalization of sanctions and constructive strategic relations with the united states. host: flynt leverett a teacher at penn state. also a senior fellow here in washington at the new america foundation. focusing on iran. thanks for joining us. guest: happy to do it. host: there's a new book called cuba wars. that's daniel erikson. new developments the u.s. embassy is closed in yemen and british embassy has shut down operations in that country. we'll talk about yemen as fight on terrorism continues. is that the new front on terrorism? two veterans of politics. rothenberg and charlie cook as we look ahead to the 2010 elections. sunday, january third. 2010. the "washington journal" continues in just a moment.
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it must show c-span programming and show varying points of view. winning entries will be shown on c-span. don't wait another minute. go to c-span dot org for more information. >> our guest today on book t.v. in the author of four books including the best-selling, culture of corruption takes your calls and tweets. three hours with michelle mallkin on book t.v. >> "washington journal" continues. host: for the next hour. midterm election politics and nobody better to talk to than our two guests. rothenberg the editor of the rothenberg political report and charlie cook of the cook political report. thanks to you both for being with us. what are you looking at in 2010? guest: i think when you look at a national election you look and
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say what's the historical average. then you say what may deviate from that. we know from history in a first term midterm election the average result is the president's party losing about 16 seats in the house. breaking even in the senate and losing about five governorships. you look at the current situation and say, well we're in a recession and a situation where president's job approval rating is on the lower end of the scale. point of bv where ron reagan was at this point december of his first year in office but four points behind where bill clinton was. both of them lost a lot of seats. you're looking at - you know basically all the factors argue this should be as big or larger than for a normal midterm election except one thing the republican brand is not where the republican brand was going into the 94 election or where
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the democratic brand going into the 2006 election. the last two big turnover mid elections. that's sort of the one offsetting factor. all the indicators look like this is going to be. democrats will probably have tough losses this time. guest: i never disagree with charlie so i'm not going to start now. i'm less see time about the environment next year than charlie so i'm a little more cautious. obviously in terms of the overall landscape it's going to be a difficult environment for democrats and good opportunitiess for republicans and certainly we're looking at the president's numbers but also looking at the economy. lots of challenges out there for democrats as well as technical things. democratic turn out. republican enthusiasm. frankly, the republican years ago used to talk about. viewing the parties almost as
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stocks and republicans we might say are over sold. charlie has used that term in the years. but republicans have a ways to come back. there's lots of opportunities for republicans and lots of reasons for democrats to be nervous but i'm willing to see what the president's performance and publics evaluation of that. host: you charlie are calling it toss up space. harry read. colorado in appointed democratic incumbent. in pennsylvania and then you have basically four seats currently held by republicans open seats. as you look at the toss up raises which ones peek your interest the most? guest: when i look at the republican missouri, new hampshire, ohio, i could see republicans very plus bli holding on to three out of four. maybe even all four.
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i think the real battle will be more in the five democratic toss up seats. michael bennett in colorado. delaware. illinois open seats. harry reed and then maybe throw in blanch, lincoln and arkansas to me, that action is more in democratic held seats and this is totally opposite of what stew and i would have said. republican open seats. now the story i think is more in the democratic seats. guest: exactly i had a year ago or so, i had kentucky leaning democratic. missouri. new hampshire. we had a toss up seat but i assumed the democrats would win all of them. now the focus is shifted entirely. i think you have to be fascinated by two republican opportunities in delaware and illinois. the de mice of a republican
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moderate. two more moderate in very difficult states in the states of the sitting president of the united states where republicans have a chance of winning both of those in addition to some of the democratic incumbents and chris dodd and senator lincoln in serious trouble. i think the focus is definitely on the democratic seat. >> first of all you wrote about the illinois primary. mark kirk is expected to win. what's happening in illinois? guest: conservatives don't like him. those that see him as too soft. not a reliable conservative vote. there are a number of candidates against him. there's one in particular who thinks he has traction but we don't really see it. i expect mark kirk to win it and win the nomination reasonably
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comfortably. what's his margin going to be and the democrats get close or not? ho host democratic primary in virginia? guest: this is party switchers. they have to worry about are they going to get primaried in their know party. i think specter is in that situation to were about whether he can hold on. it's not just, here is a former republican coming in and for the first time competing in a democratic primary, but i think that - but he has to combat the age issue. is he too old? that he's been sort of part of the washington scene in an kind of outsider year. is he seen too much as an insider. it's a compounding effect of the problems. frankly if this were a year or two ago. i would have said regardless of
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who wins the democratic primary. i think they would have an advantage in general election over pat tomby who i think is awfully conservative but in this climate either democrat would be no better than an even money shot against him in this climate. host: headline from the miami herald. charlie crisp final year of governor begins with perilous pole numbers and his shell of political teflon deeply scratched. guest: biggest problem for him is in republican primary. i speak to a number of groups, i'm sure charlie encountered the same situation. republican groups in florida. republican voters. i can't find many that are enthusiastic about charlie chris. they don't see him as a real republican. they remember he embraced the president, supported the
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president's stimulus package. i think there's a lot of conservative opposition to him. many republicans who were loyal to support jeb bush have not been happy with charlie chris feeling where jeb bush stood his ground against the state legislature governor chris has been more willing to be accommodating and have strong principals not and this is offset by establishment of republicans particularly here in washington d.c. that believes a popular governor can easily win the senate seat and while they think mark rubio can win they think it's not quite as easy. being more of a cluttered process. i think when they start off these - i thought mark rubio was an interesting kind of confusing case of, why did you do this? why not run for attorney general and move up over the years? but increasingly, it looks as
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charlie chris will have difficulty in this republican raise. it's still a question of fund raising and a very expensive state. chris can dominate the news and unfortunately he's not always dominated in a way to help him win a republican nomination in florida. host: former senator leaving office and george le mu appointed by charlie chris. does that impact florida politics? guest: i think what's truly extraordinary to me is generally speaking, a government. sitting governor is the leader of the party and idea that a sitting governor would have problems within his own party is rather extraordinary but in this particular case, the leader of the republican party in florida is effectively jeb bush. his predecessor and blood between the two would not seem
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to be that good and chris is still sort of in bush's shadow and that sort of carried over into this situation. host: this is from bob, saying tea partyers love rubio. guest: right. i think they're enthusiastic about him. look. if you read and listen to mark rubio he has articulateing a consistently conservative line. taking on the governor as being too supportive of presidential initiatives so there's a clear split. let's make this clear steve, this is a conservative version of this. pennsylvania remember the primary six years ago. this is another case of that and it's hoffman and new york. 23rd special election.
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this is the test case for conservatives and the club of growth for antitax. conservative group, call them what you like. they're going to likely make this their next test case. host: our two guests will get to your phone calls and tell us what's happening in your state. raise for government or state or senate that your keeping a close eye on. one other question. charlie cook from your lean republican raises you include louisiana your home state and connecticut. chris dodd facing a tough re-election bid. the chair of the banking committee. guest: i would be surprised if david lost re-election even with the scandal he had. i personally don't think you'll see many republican house, senate or governor lose in 2010. maybe not lose any.
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in the kind of political environment we're seeing now, you typically don't see many, many at all of the side that's sort of more dominant having some of their own incumbents lose and i don't think there will be a lot of republican incumbents in the deep south loseing any. guest: there's a number of states that are bad for president barack obama. kentucky, louisiana. arkansas and that gives republican advantages. ho host what about senator chris dodd. guest: charlie is a degree save on that one. what got into you charlie? guest: democrats have lots of problems but not in connect cut. chris dodd has a problem. i think there's sort of a point, when the electorate has basically lost confidence in an
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incumbent that doesn't have a lot to do with the party but sort of the personal relationship and my sense is that voters in connecticut have hit the mute button on chris dodd that it's all self inflicted and he has nobody to blame but himself. i have a hard. even with, i put it this way. if chris dodd set aside the state general, i wouldn't have any doubt at all that he would hold on but with chris dodd i would put them as an underdog. guest: no. i don't know who's in worse shape. chris dodd or harry reed. their numbers are both terrible. they're both up in the upper 30's. lower 40's. these are political figures that have been around a long time. as charlie knows the voters no these people and it's hard to
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change them once the opinions of them are solidified so i don't know if he's in worse shape than harry reed. i think they're both going to have difficult raises. i'm just pleased to see charlie being aggressive. guest: if i had a choice to be one of them i would be harry reed. he's more likely to be able to effect his own outcome than dodd dodd is. host: texas there's a primary governor perry that succeeded governor george bush who became with senator kay bailey hutch ins and democrats have not won in almost 20 years. guest: democrats are looking at this raise seeing a great opportunity because of the republicans and there's considerable ill will between the two republican candidates. senator hutchison has been
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mentioned to runing for govern nor ship but there's always some doubt. is she really going to run against him and the talk was that she was going to have to prove how serious she was by re-assigning from the senate to run for governor and she decided not to do that. she's the senate and has committed running for governor. she's that raise now. she started off with terrific pole numbers doing well in the head-to-head and now her numbers have softened and i think most people think rick perry is a degree save campaigner and he's trying run as more conservative candidate. most people think he has a fight nej the raise for renomination and maybe this explained by hutchison has changed her strategy. the democrats hope there's enough of a republican blood bath they'll have a chance in this raise. and they they think they have a
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good candidate former mayor white from houston. host: jim on the republican line from north carolina. good morning, jim. caller: good morning. as your guests aware. spratt is running here in south carolina and i know of a lot of republicans that are planning sending donations down there because we've got a train wreck up here for the own state. i was just curious what they thought the tea party movement will, if it will generate even more participants after they pass this healthcare bill, and also if the um... obama administration will try and push the immigration amnesty aspect to create higher voters for the democrats in 2010? host: thanks jim. guest: think he has a real
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raise this time. the last few cycles he hasn't had a serious challenge. you know this is one of the raises where the republicans are broadening the playing field. the last two or three cycles the democrats looking for districts they haven't competed in. suddenly threatening republicans and i think we see the reverses an a good example and the senator came in to see me and i thought he was a credible candidate. the question is, how deep this antiobama feeling is. concern about the economy. can republicans blame spratt. i think this is definitely a raise to wash. it's not on the radar screen. in terms of immigration i know the democrats have talking about bringing immigration up. i can't imagine it. it seems to me they have enough on their plate in healthcare and then cap and trade and climate
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change and war in afghanistan. i can't imagine it but conservatives and tea party folks are part of the republican coalition and they're not the coalition but their part of it. guest: betty. democrats line. senate and governors raise this year. guest: yes, i was just wondering what the two gentlemen thought about the senate raise. either jennifer bruner or fischer against ralph important man. also remember important man was part of the bush administration that september so many of our job as way and really hurt the state of ohio. host: i think democrat does have a messy primary in ohio and i tend to think that fischer will come out on top but i think neither candidates are particularly impressive and yes, rob important man does as a former u.s. trade representative and former budget director of
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the bush administration gives ammunition. democrats now have ownership or by november of 2010 they will have ownership of the economy. in ohio the presidency, governorship and economy in ohio was still suffering. i think that cull up built will transfer to the democratic side and i think john casec i think it'll be a formidable ticket for republicans. it's long-time since they've had a good year in ohio but i think this time they may. if i could touch on the previous point. to me the tea party, it could be a force if it's channeled appropriately, it could be a force of strength for the republican party but on the other hand if it kind of goes off a different direction, it could be terribly destructive. in 1994, newt gingrich was able
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to channel the ross perot movement from 1992 into an an outsider antipolitician and work within the republican party to help republicans win back control of the house for the first time in 40 years. if the tea party basic movement brings people into the republican diseffected people into the republican party and they stay in the republican party it could be a powerful force for the republican party. on the other hand if it starts splitting off creating tea party candidates in siphoning support away from the republican party, then that could minimize the republican opportunities for gains in the general elections so there's going to be a fork in the road for the tee party movement and that's important in what happens in this election. ho host ohio a toss up according
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to charlie and close eye on delaware. there will be abide energy and mike castle. guest: we're waiting on bo biden. he hasn't officially announced. they say, no he's decided he's going to run and i have no reason to dispute that but i do note he has not entered raise and until he does, he's not in the raise. michael castle, former governor. statewide elected official for many years. republican because delaware only has one at house large official. he's well liked and well positions in the moderates. fits the state pretty well. this is to fill the remainder i believe of vice president's by this term four more years until bo biden gets in the raise the republicans have a strong
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candidate and democrats have a probable candidate. i'm caution and i think in ahead to head against biden i think he has a slight advantage in a republican year. in an overall republican year where voters are dissatisfied worried about the economy. even if your dad is the, even if your dad is the vice president. there's things he has to do to demonstrate he would deserve this office on his own. guest: if this were 2006 i would rather have the name biden than castle in a statewide raise in delaware but in 2010 i agree with stew. michael cast sal known quantity and much better known quantity than biden. to paint him as some reaction right winger would be pretty hard to do in delaware because they sort of know him. the thing is i'm still a little
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skeptical on whether or not biden gets in. i think there's open seats in the future, first of all i think don't even if castle won i don't think he would run in four years given his age if i were biden i would sit out assuming there would be at least one or two senate seats opening up. guest: i agree. i can't imagine why he would run except that he'll come under heavy pressure from the democratic party to save the seat and hold for it his dad. wouldn't it be embarrassing if the biden seat was lost. otherwise it makes sense for him to wait four years and run and start his own senate career. host: our conversation with charlie cook and rothenberg. bill is joining us from houston. good morning.
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republican line. caller: good morning. my question is, one, we all remember how the democrats ran against tom delay. if i'm a republican from the south that's running, i'm going to say, you know my opponent first vote is for nancy pelosi. this lady represents san francisco. is that the leader that you want me you're a point to have? someone who believes in abortion that just wants to print money and spend it? is that representing your views? guest: i think that um... and tom delay wasn't even the speaker of the house. i think though that - if i were nancy pelosi, i think she is an enormously effective as an insider legislator leader that
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if i were pelosi i think i would keep a somewhat lower profile. the thing is if your say john spratt in south carolina. i think john spratt should be the face of the democratic party in south carolina. not nancy pelosi. you know, hispanic or theica th political figures in terms of household names. i think if she did fewer press-conferences and stuck to where her strengths were, i think there her party would be better off. just as republican party was not helped by having a tom delay as most visible member of the house even if he was at no time speaker, i think that was true. democrats are better off if speaker pelosi is not quite as visible as she is.
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so i think the caller is not all wrong. host: last fall you talked about a primary in new york and match up with rudy guiliani. what's happening in that raise in new york? guest: well looks like senator is in good shape to me. the democrats problem is on the govern nor ship there's a lot of turmoil there. will governor patterson seek re-election. the two senate seats run but we don't see these as high priorities for the republicans. they have lots of opportunities and new york is still a difficult state. there's democrats who are not wildly enthused about senator jillbran but we have all the names of the people that will primary her and there's some that bagged off. this is not a huge democratic vulnerability. host: who do you think the
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republican nominee will be. guest: boxer is not strong. her numbers are not. got four or five million in the bank which in most states is not a lot of money but in california is not so much money. i think carly will be the republican nominee. there's three or two other republicans at least one other in the raise. two others looking at it. but i um... i think this is more about boxer. it's about two things. number one can barbara solidify herself out there where she's never been as strong as senator feinstein under the other is as a first time candidate will carly turn out to be assure footed candidate? she has a rather incomplete voting record, political history. these people that sort of have not taken a major public role
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and parachute into politics. sometimes they do okay and sometimes not. there's a lot of big question marks. i don't consider this is the first tear raise. it's certainly a second tear raise. but whenever you have a challenger that could have a potentially unlimited amount of money in a soft incumbent then that's problem and california it's a state that with a lot. the economy is terrible and it's a pretty volatile place right now. guest: if barbara boxer loses the senate raise. democrats will have a very bad night. the republican party at one point where looking for schwarzenegger to revive the party and that's not happened. there's as much opposition toward him and his agenda as anywhere. i think the republicans in california are still in very bad shape. the question is of course, can
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republicans make it about barbara boxer. the republican brand nationally continues to be in bad shape but they have significant opportunities but in midterm elections it's often at least significantly about the sitting president. in this case president barack obama's numbers have fallen and democrats don't bear that number in california. while senator boxers numbers have never been great and i guess i can imagine a scenario where a republican candidate could beat her it would be a quite good republican year if that were to happen. host: and house seats on average for the first year, the first midterm election for the party in power. between 20 and 25 house seat? guest: no. 16. in first terms for elected presidents post world war two it's 16. the way you get in the 20's if you say all midterm elections including the second term, midterm election tends to be more volatile.
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but i think to that point though, i think once it's important to consider that 2006 and 2008 were fabulous for democrats. kind of like a greenhouse. growing orchids and tropical plants where the temperature, soil, water, sunshine perfect growing conditions for democrats and they picked up 54 seats. now as stew said earlier on. i think democrats are at the high water mark for this period of long-term time and republicans are probably usually low. i think the odds of this going over 16 are very, very high. more than average. host: aid in deer born michigan, good morning. caller: it's really cold out here and i appreciate your show. host: it's cold here as well.
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welcome. caller: thank you very much. what i wanted to mention for the both gentlemen you have on t.v. offer there is we, the tea parties has lost faith in the democrats and republicans and i myself come from a democratic background who voted for president barack obama and expected change and we're still waiting for change. my question is, for 2010, will the candidates do what they promise to do? we do hear a lot of promises that we're going to change healthcare, whether it becoming out of wars and now we're hearing we may be going into yemen. we want to fight terrorism but we need to look at the national front and our jobs are going overseas. >> thanks able. a response. guest: his comment was we're still waiting for change.
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but if you talk to most republicans they'll say there's been way too much change. we don't like the kind of change. when people use the word change they really mean they don't like the people in and they want to be in or change the people in. change is still the message of the day steve. i think it's remarkable. we see now this is the third election cycle where it is change. change, change. economy and unemployment numbers. foreign policy. but it's now - it's flipped the other party now that wants change. change become as montre for, we don't like the direction of the country so let's bring in different people and get new policies. the problem is there's not widespread agreement. >> he's calling for a state where the unemployment, "washington post"- >> republicans have a chance to win the governorship in
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michigan. i think voters there are just are open to almost anything now and that includes republicans. guest: to pick up on what stew said. people are unhappy with the republican congress and then in 2008 they through republicans out of the white house. 2010 they're unhappy with democrats their inclination would be to throw them out but at the same time when the democratic brand is damageed the republican brand is not correspondingly improving and that makes it so volatile that the voters are growing disillusioned with democrats but they still haven't reconciled to the republican party and so, we're creating an environment that would be perfect for a strong independent candidate but the thing is they continue to tend to be eccentric and not
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able to catch on and so, it's purely something that sort of highly flammable but unlikely that many matches will get struck. ho host you can log on to cook to get more information on charlie cook and his predictions for the midterm elections and rothenberg in his blog. both websites are linked to our site if you want to check it out. ken from texas. democrat line. good morning.. >> first of all happy new year and i'm a first time caller and i watch this show all the time. my question is dealing with some of the african-american civil rights leaders and some of the people in congress coming out calling the president out about you know, he's not doing enough to help african-americans and i
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just want to ask, is this like a form of you know, voter suppression when you know they come out and speak like that - in other words, pumping up the conservatives and really suppressing the african-americans from even coming out to vote. you know, does it have like the jesse jackson, al sharp on the effect pumping up conservatives because african-americans really don't. guest: my response is this is simple interest group politics. this is some significant high profile african-american political leaders that want to pressure the president's agenda so i don't think it's an attempt to suppress the american or african-american vote it's an effort to push the president
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down the road these leaders want. guest: i think the pressure is on the first african-american president to not just do but to go much further than any president has ever gone for causes sort of aligned with the african-american community. i think the pressure is awfully high and potent for disappointment is great, but i think you know president barack obama is trying approach it like he's the first president who is an african-american rather than an african-american president and that's obviously going to leave some in the african-american community disappointed but at the same time the job approval ratings among african-americans, hang on it's 89 percent. actually 91% in the gallop pole for the week of december 21'st of 27th. i tell you what. that's about as close to 100 you'll ever see in a pole so i would not say there's any
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widespread dissatisfaction with president obama. maybe some highly visible people making lot of noise but 91% is a heck of a job approval rating. guest: and rothenberg there's a special election to fill the seat by the late senator edward kennedy. raise between scott brown republican in massachusetts and the state attorney martha cokely. massachusetts has not elected a republican for many years. mitt romney is the most recent example. guest: voters in the state are willing to vote for the minority party for governor and statewide offices but usually not for senate seats which are regarded as more ideological and to some extent more partisan. if you look at republicans elected governors in massachusetts. rhode island. hawaii and vermont.
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very democratic states and they have governors in places like wyoming and a number of conservative and for senate seats we don't see it often and increasingly we don't see that at all when we live in the polarized washington politics i think we're all watching because we remember there was a house special election in massachusetts not long ago where now congressman won but it was a surprising raise. we're all looking here to see is there going to be some message of dissatisfaction even in a democratic state but it's difficult to imagine republicans winning. if they do that will send chills. host: snapshot on january 19th? guest: i would be astonished if republicans didn't win but it's astonishing how many republicans
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we've had in new england and i think it's voters own way to have a check and balance. if you have on other when he will ming democratic legislation then they like a republican to balance it out. caller: good morning. steve, good morning gentleman, speaking from the people's republic of california. stew you made a very interesting point saying governors from new england, republican governors have been winning elections. what's interesting to me is that, i think that what you haven't put your finger on is that the independent i think in this country will determine the 2010 election across the country. the nature of legislation
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democrats are bringing into the spotlight after the recess of course is healthcare, then we're faced with the carbon tax and the war going on in afghanistan. i think that if i were to give any kind of a hint of successful elections across the country for republicans, is be the loyal opposition and let the democrats hang themselves the independents are going to be tired of unemployment and big spending. what do you think charlie? guest: no, i was just looking among independent voters. let's see the gallop pole. the president has been a job running around i think at about 46 percent among independents and this is a group that gosh they went for democrats by 18 point margin in 2006.
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went for president barack obama by 8 points in the last presidential election and president's head is a little below water among in de pen at the present voters and in terms of ballot democrats are further behind. i think this caller is right. independent voters is - that's - they are the swing group and the thing is while independents tend to vote in somewhat lower numbers in midterm elections than presidential. you know, do these independent voters swing against democrats because they're unhappy with the democratic congress or are they so disaffected it's a vote on houses and do they not show up at all having turned on republicans in two elections and then democrats turning on them and saying to hell with all of you. there's some degree possibility of that that you could see an
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unuse wally low turn out among independents that are mad at both sides. host: midterm elections. michael bennett appointed in that seat to replace senator sal czar at interior why is this raise so much up in the air? guest: he has a primary against democratic legislator that has some establishment support, but mostly establishment is with senator bennett. there's no doubt but romn o f is an in surf get and insiders say he's personally ambitious but bennett doesn't have deep roots in democratic party. hasn't been active in part son politics surprise to us by the governor. you have a democratic primary to take some resources to be spent winning the nomination.
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and while the republican raise is a bit confused and hasn't quite developed although jane norton appears to be the front runner. i have not yet met her. i try to read the candidates to get a sense of who they are you can read about them but until you sit town with them for an hour. i don't want somebody else's evaluation. guest: you know her brother-in-law. charlie black. guest: that's true but i want to sit down with her. this is a good example like in 2006-2008 the democrats have a good opportunity to make it about the republicans. but now it's going to be much more about the democrats and the oil opposition was right. the republicans need to make this about democrats and democratic problems so the
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democrats will say these are republican problems that and off to us. it's harder to sell that. in a case like colorado if norton turns out to be the candidate she may well be in this environment those independent voters will swing and there's the other element. is democratic turn outgoing to turn out like it was in 2008. younger voters probably not. will republicans turn out higher because they're more energized and want to send a message. it's the combination of the changes in the state like economy. host: bryan for dallas. independent line. good morning.. caller: good morning. you're talking about independence and i'm independent. not one that swings back and forth. think the two parties failed and i hear no conversation and as far as i'm cancered there must
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not be any independent parties. i did hear ralph nader would run for a senate seat. have you guys heard of any strong independents? guest: well he's from connecticut and rumor there's some discussion of him running in connecticut for the chris dodd seat, but you know, for residency requirements for federal office are minimal and you basically have to be there by election day for all intensive purposes but the thing is, the fact is, yes, there are a lot of voters that are disillusions with both parties and increasing numbers that call themselves independents but the fact is, independent, there are rarely are there credible candidates running as independents and even more rarely do they actually win. it's just that way.
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the kinds of candidates that typically runs a independents are sort of fringe candidates that don't have lots of contacts and don't have no organizational ability and you know, you tend to be somewhat eccentric. it's rare that you see a strong viable independent candidate so that's why we talk about independent candidates are strong on potential but the reality usually falls short. host: democrat line. good morning.. caller: i wanted to know, i know you have a lot of statistics in poling and what i consider the nonpartisanship fill buster party. i wanted to know how the republicans rated, just the republicans and in the congress on both the senate and house of
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representatives. just their rateing a loan as compared to just the democrats rateing both house? guest: well the only party that's got a worst favorable rating is the republican party. when you look at job approval ratings for democratic leaders in congress verses republican leaders in congress, the democratic party leaders have a lousy rating and republicans are even worse and the favorable unfavorable, i don't have the numbers. you have the "wall street journal" pole there. but the republican party favorable ratings are extremely low. that's one fly in the ointment for why republicans may not be able to make enormous gains in the election is that their brand is damaged. i think i made the point earlier that in 2006 when democrats made
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such huge gains the democratic brand was not damaged. when the republican party made great gains the brand wasn't damaged. that could put a ceiling on how great a rear this could be. host: calling from missouri. a state this which the two likely candidates. the former governor of that state and mr. blunt who's son is now vying for an open senate seat right now. guest: extremely competitive interesting raise. this would be or could be one of the closest raises of the cycle. statewide elected official. good name, democrats, enthusiastic. united behind the candidacy early. blunt, was secretary of state i believe many years ago. son was governor, significant figure here in the republican house leadership for a number of
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years. um... we have the raise that's toss up. this is one i believe is. but here's the kicker. it depends what the national environment is like. how bad and difficult sit for democrats. missouri is likely to be a state where the democrats start off with having some problems. very close raise in the presidential election as you will recall. two years ago, there aba considerable age because it would be about president bush but now it's going to be about president barack obama so i think that changes the mix. we look for a very close raise here. charlie's point. host: did we fill i buster enough? guest: yeah. the republican party. this is not republican in congress and democrats. when you put the word congress
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in a sentence numbers drop significantly. positive 28, negative 43. the democrats is better. 35 positive and negative 45 but not a lot there. host: mark from ohio. republican line. good w morning. caller: wanted to bring up the election here in ohio has gotten to be where there's so many job losses and so many people haven't insurance i think the republican party will have a tough time here. look. even republicans realize we ain't got insurance. and all we see is just push back and lives distorted. i think the election will bring out we missed an opportunity for like even me as a republican, not being able to get insurance.
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i'll hang up and listen to your phone call. host: either one of you? guest: i'm not sure what specific insurance the caller is talking about, but the thing is republicans party had everything. they had virtually all the offices in ohio for a long time and obviously the presidency control of congress and they paid a price for scandals in columbus. miss steps in columbus and national problems for the republican party and paid a horrible price. now democrats have almost everything in ohio. presidency. congress. good governorship. both houses of legislature and at one point. they just have one split? okay. host: we'll get calls if i'm wrong. i think they're split. guest: the point is, at some point, ownership conveys. ownership of the economy conveys
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from the republican side to the democratic side and generally in two years that ownership pretty much goes over and the question is, is there a shelf, how long will sort of the bush hang other last verses obama and democrats having responsibility for the economy and i think in two years that ownership conveys. guest: i think this is one of the most fascinating states. if you look at statewide ballots. up and down they recruited one strong candidate. marry taylor the state auditor. the republicans took a bath this the state the last couple of elections. i think the representative reason republicans are over sold. the last couple of years you get a misinterpretation. the state in a bad economic
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environment. the key thing is rob important man. somebody mentioned. former congressman and former u.s. trade representative under bush. easy to tag him, bring back george bush. representative r - well that scares democrats but not scary to independent voters or squishy republicans because now the focus is on president obama and i think they'll try to mike it about george bush. with each day of the calendar it gets harder. while there's still animosity among democrats independents are much more about mood if they were strong ideology they would be republicans or democrats but they're independent so the mood right now is for change. .
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guest: we have a long way to go.
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but it is certainly a heavily, heavily democratic district, and the odds are it will go back to democrats. host: fresno, california, independent line. good morning. caller: good morning. happy new year. i guess i am a squishy and moody and not sure and fringe because i'm an independent. guest: i did not say that the voters were fringe, but the candidates were. host: senator feinstein -- caller: senator feinstein is going to lose. host: senator boxer is up for reelection this year, but senator feinstein. caller: all of them are tied together, so who ever is, for
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re-election is going to lose. but charlie and stu, please stop trying -- tying teabaggers the republican party. independents are going to be independents, democrats are going to democrats, republicans are going to be republicans. guest: first of all, we are not tying -- guest: i think most of the key backe -- teabaggers are republicans. i do not think a lot of them are pure independents are not more aligned with republicans and democrats. guest: i don't think it is something new. i don't think we are creating that. there is a lot of discussion about where these people come
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from, and they are generally anti-big government, anti-obama, anti-tax, certainly. might there be some libertarians or, sometimes when you talk about the political spectrum, he get very far right or left, and there are some people like that who are rather anti- establishment and might be attracted to the protests. sure. but generally the tea party movement has been characterized as more conservative and more republican. and charlie is right. it is an important part of the republican coalition. to the extent that it defines the republican party, that would be a problem. host: an open seat, senator judd gregg not seeking reelection. what is going to happen? guest: the key action is on the republican side. to the republicans nominate a true blue, traditional hard-core
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conservative, or do they go with the state attorney general, who is certainly moving to the right position herself as more conservative, but stylistically despite considered -- stylistically is considered less of a movement conservative. i think that is one case where what happens in the republican primary really will be very important in terms of what happens in the general election. host: we will look at some other races to watch in the 2010 midterm election. francis from indiana. good morning, on the democrats' line. caller: good morning. i'm almost 73, and i'm a political junkie. i would like to know what our --
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the story of eses and diebold -- is a little housewife is exposing this on her website. host: turn this into a question for our guests. caller: why did we privatize or vote? -- oru -- our vote? all the votes in ohio in 2004 were shifted and the tallies were changed. host: the 2000 election is fresh anthony peoples mines. -- fresh in many people's min ds. guest: i don't believe a 99.9% of these election fraud stories.
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believe that ohio and 2004 -- i don't believe that ohio in 2004 was not entirely straight up. i do not think i've seen a legitimate case of election fraud in federal case in my entire career. i think you are more likely to have a sheriff's race someplace benningha than to have a house f tora waste. people get off on conspiracy theories. there are those who convince themselves that there is a great conspiracy out there. but you will find very few people who are professionals who watch elections for a living to put any stock in any of this stuff. host: eugene, oregon. there is a senate race out there. ron wyden seeking reelection. republicans waline.
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caller: i hear a lot of political talk about one party or another, and you are reading numbers about the disenfranchised. i'm a working guy, have been laid off, and what everyone of us is talking about, what everyone is saying, what does not seem to be getting hurt on the political level is that there is no real change. the change we're talking what is jobs coming back, seeing the people here are actually having their lifestyles getting better, not worse, with health care that is affordable, not just an option, but something real and affordable so that we are now trapped in ones we don't like. guest: this is a problem the president has. the congress has been doing a lot of different things, but the results have not been there. people do not see the results. if the economy were improving, even if the president had not done anything, he would get credit for it. and that is the change, the
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change for how people feel, that they're happy with the way their lives are improving. this is the problems of the democrats' base. it is not enough for president -- this is the problem that the democrats face. it is not enough for the president to another speech about change. it is results. as long as the news is that when people open the newspaper or turn on the tv, whether it is afghanistan or the economy or to have personal instances of running into health care problems, insurance problems, they will not feel there is change, who was up there. -- no matter who is up there. host: there is always something under the radar screen. i want to ask you about what you think is an under-the-radar race. louisville, kentucky. caller: i have a comet that and a question to go with it. i'm one of those people who has
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paid off the mortgage and i'm not entitled to any of the handouts that the governor is making to those people who did not bother to pay mortgage payments or credit cards. so i feel like an idiot. my question really is, i'm watching what is going on in this country, and i have a sense of history, and i understand cats the definition of communism is a redistribution of wealth, control all facets of our lives, and i see that coming down the pike with medical care and loan modifications that amount to 900,000-plus per modification that the federal government has made, and spend $47 billion to do it. that is a redistribution of wealth. i don't know who it is going to br. contracts are now going based on race. you guys are supposed to know what is up. i am connecting the dots, and i am seeing redistribution happened right before my very eyes.
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but i've seen what this party has promised basically for a century, which was never worked anywhere and couple why we would want to try it is gone needed -- and why we would want to try it is beyond me. . the national workers socialist party. what are the other. i'm not sure which. guest: well, the thing is, i am not sure i ever met -- bernie sanders used to call themselves socialists, but i'm not sure i ever met a candidate -- used to call himself a socialist, but i'm not sure i have met and who calls himself pick communist or socialist. the government has taken a reach into the private sector and more than we have seen in most of our lifetimes. it was in response to the fall of lehman brothers and the credit markets using ups and the stock market crashing -- its
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credit market seizing up and the stock market crashing in 2008. extraordinary steps were taken by a republican president and republican-appointed chairman of the federal reserve and it continued in a democratic administration with an extraordinary economic catastrophe. i think there's a lot to fault president bush on, but his acting -- his backing -- it was probably one of his finest hours.
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he continues to tell me whether the governor is going to stay in that race. he is under significant pressure regarding running for elective your.
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-- regarding all running for election again. we were trying to wait for the governor to make the decision. he is under considerable pressure. they are trying to woo weight. it will be a difficult race for him. host: under the radar screen-is that the case. guest: we do our ratings of the time. i do not believe in least in the senate races, we have done that
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in our senate races. i do not really have one. with so much pulling taking place, particularly in these senate races, it is kind of harder to have those surprises than it used to be. host: you get the final word. guest: you have to look at some of these house races that are in the early stages that may be a surprise. i would not pick a senate race.
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i think most people out, many reporters and journalists, it is incomprehensible for some to take on the senate race. people have mischaracterized him. i remember when he was running for the u.s. health he was much more comfortable at. that is a race that i would definitely watch host. host: thanks for joining us this hour. we will be back in a moment. here is a look at some of the
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topics and the guests that are shaping up this sunday morning conversation. here is c-span radio. >> we will be discussing a certain topic on all of our sunday shows. here are some of the death. former homeland security secretary and some cia personnel. share of the house homeland security intelligence subcommittee is another guest. the get on fox news sunday include a missouri republican said the fed -- senator. on face the nation from cbs, you will hear the host with a
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reporter. on cn and the state of the union will have a missouri democratic senator and a south carolina republican. you can listen to all five on c- span radio. we are available on the web. you can follow us on facebook and better. >> "washington journal" continues. host: we are wondering if yemen is the new front on terrorism. we will show you an excerpt on
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the internet address that he did back in hawaii. the president is back from hawaii tomorrow. some new developments over the weekend of the state department and nothing that there will be shutting down in one area. here is what the president said earlier. >> we must never forget what always carries us through times of trial. instead of giving in to fear, but as we knew that timeless
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american spirit of resolve and confidence and optimism. instead of succumbing to partisanship and division, let us use some unity that this moment demint. we must do what must be done to keep our country. host: the president was responding to some including -- there are some comments of him calling in into the partisan attacks. he said the president does not consider -- and a person write about how women must be saved. he says the problems are many and summer spreading beyond its borders. yemen has a population of about 23 million.
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75% of its revenue comes from oil resources. the average per-capita income is less than $900 per year. nearly half of the population earns a certain figure per day. we have a caller. caller: i think what we're hearing about yemen is crazy. a guy get escorted on the plane and we are supposed to go through all of these checkpoints and show id. and yet the fbi lied to everybody's saying it never happened. host: we have someone on the democrats' line from miami. good morning. caller: i would in the region a
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few years ago. the poverty that there was overlooked by the multinationals. i can't help but to think that we are not getting all the information on him. people are beautiful there. in the presence of poverty, it is hard to see how people can have a different world view of the united states. along those lines, this is how "the new york times" describes it. we have someone joining us from louisiana.
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caller: sank god that people are starting to wake up. -- thank god that people are starting to wake up. people need to look into going on. nigeria is one of the most corrupt countries in the world. you also want to check out the pipeline of imf loans. many are about to be lost because of the uprising in yemen. with that $5 billion in jeopardy. that is why we are going in on
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this. this attack if promoting beer. it is a false light. we going to war because somebody had a firecracker that i can hardly believe this. this was not on the radar screen until $5 billion came up being ejected. >> thanks. there have been a couple of developments over nine. and january 28, prime minister gordon brown was looking to discuss how to counter the radicalization. the british government saying that prime minister brown and president obama agreed to a counter police terrorism unit -- counterterrorism police unit in one area. both countries announcing the
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shutting down indefinitely u.s. and british embassies in that country. we have a caller from maryland. caller: america have to be careful about this gentleman that tried to blow up the airplane with a firecracker. because he is a muslim does not affect all muslims guilty of the spirit of 2 billion muslims in this world a common all colors. we need to try to respect the best people. that was the mistake president bush made when he declared the situation of 911 about a war on muslim terrorists. we have to try to deal with these things as criminal
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offenses rather than implicating a whole group of people. suppose a christian goes out and blows something. are all questions guilty? host: we are taking at one of the photographs this morning in the paper. the new york times reporting that u.s. financial assistance will double in 2010. general petraeus who was in yemen on friday was meeting with a u.s. security team. they are trying to determine what happened on the christmas day attempted bombing. next if he is joining us from florida. he is all the democrats line. caller: good morning. this is really sad. we are supposed to have a great
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national security of the united states and it is supposed to be the greatest in the world. tuesday what has happened about this gentleman, it is sad. if we do not stand up and take action and be held refundable for our blunders, this nation is going to fall. it is a sad, disgusting thing that everybody wants to communicate in be a hero. there are no heroes. i am an ex-marine. we believe a hero is a dead body. you need to take charge. you need to cut these people off. nobody comes into this country
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from those nations unless they are fully screened. host: thanks for the call. here is a map that looks at some of the most recent activity including some of the terrorist activity. we have one person joining us from annapolis. caller: i think yemen is the new front terrorism. i am and will slump. -- muslim. i came to the united states about five years ago. all of us are not terrorists. one thing that i have seen that the media was not paying a lot of attention to is the amount of damage this terrorist is causing to our group.
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i am from seoul malia bridgett somalia. -- i am from somalia. over 40 students were killed. issues have not been raised by the media. got about two minutes of coverage. the media should labettlook at s more. host: thank you.
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our conversation as on-line on a porch with your page as well as -- is online as well aon our twr page as well as on the phone lines. we have another caller. we lost the caller. thank you for calling. you can join the conversation on our twitter page. we will come back and take a look at a book in our relations with the country cuba. we are back in a moment. ♪
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♪ >> after a while, it will leasing's and that you do not own it. you are trespassing. that hurts. my possessions are in a storage bin. >> this week on q&a, on american casino, there award winning documentary on the impact of sub-prime mortgages on minorities. that is tonight at 8:00. fox news contributor is our guest today on book tv. she is taking your calls, emails, and tweets.
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that is live today at 9:00 a.m. on book tv. host: we welcome the author of the book "cuba wars." you say the united states and cuba remain in a war that will likely persist. he said the election of barack obama has created new possibilities, but these events have not measured in a new beginning of our relations with cuba. guest: what you have seen over time the forces for continuity remain extremely strong. one part of this is the cuban government itself. more than 51 years have passed since he first took power. he extended power to his brother but wall castraul castro.
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overtime, the policy has yielded much in a result. be used to have a substantial amount of political support. what you see right now are changes in the nuances of the cuban relationship but not over a certain amount of time. host: george w. bush was the 10th u.s. president to spar with fidel castro. guest: fidel castro took power when he was 32 years old in
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1959. one of the great stories of cuban politics over the last century is his capacity to send an external and internal challenges within his role. in 2006, he was struck with a very severe stomach ailment. somehow he has managed to recover. he stepped down as president of cuba. he no longer runs the country. his brother has taken on the position. he has been seen photographed with other leaders. neighbors have seen him walking the street. at 83 years old, he has persisted into the new decade. host: he is working at brown university.
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you say cuba and emerging opposition leaders come from a mixed background. disenchanted party officials that broke with the government, activists guided by a religious faith, people motivated by democratic desires, and opportunists who want to play a role in whatever comes next. guest: that is right. you see an emergent civil society from various backgrounds. you have others who came up through religious traditions or other traditions outside of the state. they have banded together. they still have persistent divisions. they do not have brought lineages -- brought the linkages across society. this will range this -- this
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remains an unfair fight between the government and the opposition. host: in chapter 8, you call it the least worst place. explain. guest: one person described guantanamo bay cuba as this. it is a fascinating place. it is the oldest overseas base that the united states has. it is in a hostile country. the government does not recognize the validity of the police. -- the entire area remains in
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american control yet is in cuba. >host: the fact that this base s on the tip of communist cuba is an afterthought. guest: the guantanamo base is in cuba. we are on the cuban side of the equation. they see guantanamo bay as being part of their sovereign territory. the united states pays the cubans thousands of dollars a year to lease the base. the castro government has not cashed the checks for the past few years. so it has been a peak -- a
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freebase for the most part. host: sam is joining us from irvine, california. good morning. caller: you talked about guantanamo bay. that was my question. i am new to cuban-american politics. how is it that the americans can least a significant portion of this base in cuba? they seem to be alien to u.s. principals, democracy. guest: guantanamo became a u.s. control following the spanish- american war. the way the leas is written is
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it can only be dissolved under a couple of scenarios. u.s. must abandon the base and the cubans can reclaim it. the u.s. and the cubans have to dissolve the lease. since 1959, the cubans have asked for us to dissolve the least. we have not agreed. as a result, guantanamo remains under american control. it is the only place with a drive-through mcdonalds. since 1959, the cuban government has not cashed the checks. fidel castro was known to invite foreign visitors into his office where he has opened his desk drawer and showed the uncashed checks fueling indignation.
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the obama administration wants to shut down the detention facility. i do not think anybody is really considering closing down the base in its entirety. as a result, i think the naval base there will remain under american control throughout the obama administration. host: had you compare the threat of cuban and iranian threats to our national security? guest: this topic has generated a lot of debate. in 1962, cuba played a major role in the cuban missile crisis. the soviet government placed missiles in cuba discovered by the kennedy administration. they negotiated a way to remove the missiles from cuba. iran in many ways poses a more
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dangerous unpredictable power today than was the case for q. but in 1962 -- then it cuba i 1962. there are certain parallels there. cuba never had indigenous nuclear capabilities. iran is in the process of trying to bolster its nuclear capacity in a way that is very concerning. host: our guest is daniel erikson. caller: i would like to know your feelings on cuba and now that the cold war is supposedly over.
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i know we have bills in congress that has lifted travel bans to american citizens. but what are your thoughts on that since the threats are gone? by some as big as if it is the 1960's again. guest: in terms of travel, you can look at it that cuba remains the only country in the world where the u.s. government would actually punish american citizens for traveling there. that is not the case for iran or north korea. perhaps those governments would not give you a visa to come in. if you go, it is not a violation of u.s. law which is the case for cuba. if you look at the communist
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countries that make the transition to democracy, these are countries that had a broader and deeper metal cast -- middle- class. in terms of travel, the american society and director of cuban side, it could be beneficial over the long run. u.s. congress is considering a number of bills looking at opening travel to cuba. some feel if we open of travel to cuba, it is not the best action to take. many more feel we should try a new approach to cuba. host: in the book, it did at
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miami has relations to cuba that is not easily reconciled. guest: yes. i come to miami politics not growing up in that environment because i am from maine. there is a founding generation of cuban exiles that came from cuba to the united states and always felt they would go back. you have a generational transition that has been holding in miami. many public opinion polls said they favor greater travel, trade, a dialogue with cuba. that public sentiment does not manifest itself fully. you have very few elected cuban
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representatives who support opening to cuba. many want to press the cup -- cuba government. host: he is the coat editor of this book. we have a caller from tulsa, oklahoma. the morning caller:. -- caller: the morning. i come from jamaica. i have been to cuba several times because they did not set any restriction of anybody coming into the country. we are neighbors in the
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caribbean. they supply certain items to jamaica. q. what is a very literate country. -- cuba is a very literate country. they do not suffer a lot a lot like we do here. the american people do not understand much about cuba. have a very good new year. guesthost: 1 viewer says the in barkemargo shouldbargo should hd years ago.
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what about that? guest: you did not have millions of chinese living in an important swing state before the election. another issue is the cubans are not following the china model. they are not opening their economy to more foreign investment, trade, but rather practice state run economics. i did not agree with everything the caller said. cuba has a great deal of appeal in the caribbean and latin america.
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it is a country that has a wide number of doctors overseas. that has helped to generate a lot of support for cuba in the developing world and makes many countries question the u.s. embargo. recently the united nations voted to condemn the u.s. embargo in cuba. many countries oppose the embargo and only three voiced support which was the united states, israel, and one other nation. host: we have matt on the democrats' line from virginia. caller: good morning. the embargo on cuba is probably
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the most boneheaded policy that exists within the united states government. if you looked at -- look at congress over the years, there have been several votes to end the embargo on cuba. i think they have passed it in some point. one senator in new jersey has been a very vocal minority in to the embargo. your guest mentioned china and cuba, but we also do a lot of this with vietnam. we are willing to ship our manufacturing overseas to where the cheapest labor is in the
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world. one of those places was vietnam where we had a very tragic war. yet we cannot do business with cuba. our policy against cuba has been immoral policy that should have ended. we should be able to do business with cuba. host: thanks. that is similar to the comments made about the twitter question. guest: it is very hard to get the legislation passed through congress unless there is broad consensus. when you look at the a decision that has been passed with cuba, these measures to tighten the sanctions -- while there is a
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broad segment of congress that wants to open up our policy, there still remains deep division. some want to remain current policy against cuba. the senate is equally split. as a result, it is difficult for things to move forward. no one is arguing about the effectiveness of the policy towards cuba. some say if we hang onto the policy for a few years, it will make a difference. it is much more about trying to watch the trends that are occurring in south florida that will affect the business community in america. host: republican line. caller: good morning. i would like to say that i went
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to cuba in 1958 to help mr. castro overthrow the dictator there that was murderous. i am glad that it did happen. then the the united states was against castro. when he nationalized foreign refineries and kicked out the big oil companies, that was another mark. host: what are you doing back then? caller: i was just out of high school. i was falling international affairs and dull. i believe in the free right of people to govern themselves.
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bautista was a murderous thug. that drove the united states against mr. castro because he kicked out the mafia, the big sugar companies that had controlled the area -- i joined the united states navy. i was also at the blockade. host: thanks. guest: many of the events shows how critical that moment of time was to the relationship. when you look at the situation today.
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we look at the different events like the bay of pigs invasion or the cuban missile crisis which generate a lot of emotion. there is a big difference in how the cuban perceive this and the united states. united states will look at those crises and say this was during the kennedy administration. for can't -- for cuba this was during the castro administration which remains in power. cubans like to talk about the past and americans like to talk about current affairs. it continues to influence their perception of the u.s. today even under the presidency of barack obama. host: we have another caller. caller: good morning. i was living in florida when castro released the flotilla and
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sent all of the criminals across. i remember the flood of people that came in and the criminals that came in. a lot of us that work with public relations had to immediately learn spanish to deal with these people. my question is, recently i have heard of the involvement with russia building oil rigs right off our coast. i wondered if that has anything to do with why the u.s. does not want the open relationships with cuba. guest: russia has become more engaged with cuba recently. they have had other economic projects that are disgusting.
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china's largest trading partner is venezuela. some of these countries are seen as rivals to the united states. our actions in cuba is not helping our relations there. host: our last call from pembroke pines, florida. caller: good morning. on the embargo, the united states is the fifth largest food exporter to cuba. madisons are allowed. doctors are forced to serve. we have a lot of doctors in south florida.
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he sends doctors to different areas. many parts of the country are without doctors because they are forced to search elsewhere. we should have it more ballast. i am a cuban american against the embargo which is an excuse by the castro government to excuse of the misrepresentation and the terrible way they have destroyed the economy. one has to see the balance and the internal embargo that this government has forced and two people. there is a reason people have been leaving the country. there are 2 million cubans now. guest: they could trade is an
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interesting aspect. congress passed a bill that allows u.s. technical producers to sell food to cuba on a one- way basis. they cannot sell to the united states. last year, there were the fifth largest trading partner on this trade along. there is potential -- with respect to the doctors, this is something that is controversial in cuba. many doctors to serve overseas and it could impact the country's health system. one in three cuban doctors are serving overseas. this is something that people are watching very closely. bhost: you say that obama has looked at the policy in cuba.
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will they be able to improve their relations? guest: we cannot answer that this year. there is issues of cuban- americans wanting to go back and visit their families on the island. it is ambivalent about improving its relationship with the united states. they have been accustomed to operating in an international environment. host: thanks for joining us. we are back tomorrow morning. thanks for joining us on


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